To The Boy Who Taught Me To Never Hide Anything

Shutterstock / seyomedo
Shutterstock / seyomedo

When I first met you, I thought you were very ordinary. It was my first semester of college, and I had just moved in the previous day. You walked up to our table in the dining hall to say hello to my roommate, who it turned out you had gone to high school with. At the time, I had no idea how significant that moment was.

You were always very strange. With your flashy Blublockers, Hawaiian shirts, Chubbies, and that always perfectly gelled back undercut. You were very different from any guy I had ever met, let alone had feelings for. You didn’t hide a thing. At the time, I was scared and would hide my beliefs. I’m a very conservative person, and as a freshman in college, I knew the world would eat me alive for it. So, I hid. You didn’t.

When you first told me that you were practically emotionless, I didn’t quite believe it. I was so sure that because of the way you flirted and protected me, that you had feelings for me. You always joked about how you didn’t want to be tied down in college, that you wanted to go to the army and didn’t want to get married until you are in your 30s, if you’d marry at all. I thought I was the exception to this rule.

I had recently just got out of a bad relationship, and I was afraid to love. I’m still afraid to love. I thought the answer to my problem was just to have a casual friends with benefits relationship with you. You were a virgin, but you still wanted everything that we had. Everyone kept telling me that this would never work, but I was convinced that I could never fall for you. Even more so, I was convinced you could never fall for me.

You never lied to me. You had, and still have, nothing to hide. I remember at night, we would sleep in your tiny dorm bed, holding each other until we both woke up the next morning. You couldn’t sleep unless your arms were around me. When we could finally get our hands on some cheap vodka, you would drink just enough for your ears to turn red and to be able to smile without force. If I thought you had too much to drink, I would tell you I was going to put all of my clothes back on and that you could drink if I was fully clothed. You would tell me no. So, I’d lay there in my bra and cuddle up close to you, and you would laugh and tell me crazy stories about your hometown.

You never took advantage of me. If anything, you were more excited to talk to me than you ever were to sleep with me. We would lay there, warm and close, and talk until one of us couldn’t keep our eyes open. Those were the nights I lived for. Then there were the weekends, when we would watch movies and go get cheap fast food and just laugh until it was time to go back to class.

You said you didn’t want a relationship. I agreed, until I realized that is what we had. I remember one night, when my anxiety was getting the best of me, that I got out of your truck crying and ran up to my dorm. We didn’t have a fight, in fact you had no idea why I was so upset. You parked your truck, which you hated to do in my parking lot, and went and sat at the dirty picnic table in the grass and waited for me to come outside. That night, you said the sweetest thing that you’d ever said to me.

“You matter to me.”

It’s not the most romantic thing in the world, but it’s the most emotion you’d ever put into anything without vodka in your blood. You asked me to come spend the night with you, and you held me all night until you were convinced I was better.

It was at this point I realized we were much more than just friends. I decided to ask you out on a real date. You hesitated, and still to this day have not given me an answer. You kept repeating, “I’ll think about it, I’ll think about it, I’ll think about it.” I didn’t realize how fast I was falling for you. Maybe not love, but it sure felt like it. We still spent any moment we could together. Even when you said you had homework, that you won’t come hang out, we would find a reason to.

We have to go grocery shopping, we have to do this, we have to do that. Come over. Please.

I just knew that you had feelings for me. I could see it in your eyes when we danced at that trashy place in downtown, when we laid in bed and tried to sleep at night, when neither one of us could fit in that last kiss before we had to leave. It was so cute, it was so romantic, and no one could believe you weren’t my boyfriend. I’d try to talk about other guys, talk about a guy that I knew liked me. You would insult him, call him a slew of vulgar names, and I would tell you that you were jealous. You said you didn’t get jealous. For some stupid reason, I believed you.

I never know how to feel with this now. You always said you didn’t want a relationship, that you didn’t want to be tied down to some girl, that you didn’t feel that way, that you weren’t jealous, that you had no feelings, and that all you care about is you. I could never believe those things, but now I do.

I know you have more important things going on. You have your schoolwork. You’re striving to make a 4.0, even though you’d convince me to stay over on nights before a big test. You’d tell me you made a B on the test without a hint of regret, and you’d still want me to be around. Lately, you’ve been ghosting me. You don’t want to talk anymore. You want to be alone, and you want to be with your cat, and your sister.

I understand.

We are so young and you have so much to figure out, and you don’t want to deal with those feelings. I didn’t want to deal with those feelings either. But I did, for you. I know this doesn’t hurt for you because you have nothing to hide. Well now, I have so much to hide. I wish you the best and I hope you find whatever you’re looking for in life. Just know that there is a person out there who fell for every little annoying thing you did.

Thank you for a great first semester. TC mark

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